Local Wire

Franz Ferdinand

Oh, those crazy Brits. It seems every three or four months, a new band from across the pond is hyped as the greatest band in the history of recorded music (or at least since The Beatles). For every Coldplay that shows staying power, there are countless other Britpop bands (Travis, Supergrass, Pulp, Blur, et al.) that arrived with similar fanfare, only to fade into relative obscurity stateside. Even Oasis, whose undeniably catchy pop anthems managed to hold America's grunge-obsessed attention for a couple of years, never approached the level of adoration they received back home. In 2004, Scottish dance rockers Franz Ferdinand were the latest "next big thing" from the U.K., and they seemed to be off to a good start with their infectious first single, "Take Me Out." Their self-titled debut sold nearly 4 million copies worldwide, but their 2005 follow-up, the aptly titled You Could Have It So Much Better, never approached those numbers. Franz Ferdinand's latest, Tonight: Franz Ferdinand, debuted at number nine in the U.S., but promptly nosedived out of the Top 50 the next week. It's a shame, really, because Franz Ferdinand — not to mention every other band mentioned above — is a helluva lot better than freakin' Coldplay.
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Mike R. Meyer